In between "Pokémon" journeys, Jeremy enjoys working as a pharmaceutical chemist and campus manager.
Eeveelutions in Pokémon
Thanks to Eevee's cute design, prominence in the anime under Gary Oak, and multiple DNA-splicing evolutions (or, as fans have dubbed them, "Eeveelutions"), foxlike Eevee remains one of Pokemon's most favored Pokémon. Although you'll rarely see its upgrades competitively, many fans still debate back and forth over which forms reign supreme.
We're here today to help stir the pot even further by ranking all eight (as of this writing) Eeveelutions from worst to best, factoring in type, ability, moveset, and stat distribution!
Evolves When: A Fire Stone is used
Ability: Flash Fire
One of Eevee's original three alterations, Flareon lumbers into last place. Why? It learns few moves outside its natural Fire (and the expected Normal) techniques while leveling, its ability never activates if your opponent has any brains (don't hit Flareon with Fire) and its stat distribution is scattered haphazardly. All Eeveelutions share a 525 Base Stat Total, and while Flareon excels in attack, it lags in hit points, defense, and speed, making it too sluggish and fragile to use.
Admittedly, Flareon can be taught moves with tutors/TMs to somewhat alleviate the issue, but it was notoriously bad back before Generation 4 introduced the mechanic of types no longer being either direct or indirect (individual moves determine that now). Prior to this, all Fire strikes were calculated with the special attack score, rendering Flareon's best trait (regular attack) useless in regards to its own type.
Evolves When: Leveled up near an Ice Rock
Ability: Snow Cloak
This Suicune-lookalike from Sinnoh can't compete with its fierce competition. Ice excels offensively, but when it comes to defense, Glaceon's Ice attribute may be the worst element in the game, suffering four weaknesses and only resisting itself. Thus, it's often better to wield Ice attacks from non-Ice Pokemon, and alternative form Vaporeon already learns some Ice techniques to satisfy frigid-seeking trainers.
Additionally, a surprising number of Glaceon's natural moves are physical, using its pitiful attack rather than an impressive special attack. Not even a decent evasion-raising ability (when the hailstorm weather condition is active) can save Glaceon from its frozen fate.
Evolves When: Leveled up at night with high friendship or with a Moon Shard in your bag
One of the two evolutions introduced in Generation 2's Johto region, sleek Umbreon has a solid theme to its stats. With strong defense and even better special defense, Umbreon forms a solid (albeit weak and slow) tank.
The Dark type is decent, weak to three elements while resisting two and completely negating once, and the ability Synchronize copies the paralyze, burn, and poison condition back onto the inflicter, but these traits can't save Umbreon's lacking moveset. With average dark moves and few tank-oriented techniques (other than the healing Moonlight), Umbreon can't quite develop into the sturdy damage-soaking stall creature it wants to be. For what it's worth, of all today's entries, Umbreon probably benefits the most from new techniques using tutors, TMs, and breeding.
Evolves When: Leveled up near a Moss Rock
Ability: Leaf Guard
Leafeon offers an interesting blend of decent speed alongside strong attack and great defense, a rare physical-oriented option among the Eeveelutions. It also enjoys a healthy moveset, from the attack-boosting Swords Dance to health-recovering Synthesis to damage-dealing Leaf Blade. Ability Leaf Guard also helps Leafeon's weather-altering Sunny Day move stand out, as harsh sunlight not only improves the Grass-type Solarbeam and Synthesis techniques, it also prevents Leafeon from suffering the main status conditions during the sunlight condition.
Unfortunately, Grass isn't the best element on defense, resisting four elements but taking double damage from five, and the fact that harsh sunlight strengthens Fire moves (one of Leafeon's weaknesses) makes using its ability risky.
Evolves When: A Thunder Stone is used
Ability: Volt Absorb
Like its Kanto brethren, Jolteon suffers from an underwhelming ability, Volt Absorb, only providing a benefit when your opponent is clueless enough to strike with an Electric attack. However, Electric tempts defensively, being weak to only one attribute while resisting three.
Additionally, Jolteon knows exactly what it wants: to hit hard and hit fast. It makes good use of a superb speed and strong special attack to quickly overwhelm foes before they can exploit its low defenses. Jolteon also learns a few irregular moves to expand its repertoire, like the Bug-type Pin Missile, but unfortunately, many of its strikes are physical rather than indirect; you'll have to level it to the upper thirties before gaining any worthy noncontact Electric attacks.
Evolves When: Leveled up with high friendship during the day/morning or with a Sun Shard in your bag
The second Eeveelution offered in Johto (and featured in Pokemon Colosseum), Espeon follows the classic Alakazam/Mewtwo stat distribution of strong speed and excellent special attack. Fortunately, most of its moves are indirect, easily accessing its best stat, and Espeon users savor how its Future Sight technique has been boosted over the years.
Just like Umbreon, it wields the solid Synchronize ability, punishing foes for using condition debuffs. A strong unit, but some potent non-Psychic indirect moves would help against Psychic-immune Dark Pokemon, and Espeon's low HP and defense render it a glass cannon.
Evolves When: Leveled up when knowing a Fairy move and having high affection
Ability: Cute Charm
Sylveon shows off Generation 6's new Fairy type with a great special defense and solid HP. These help it excel defensively alongside its type's qualities, being weak to two elements but resisting three and completely negating one. Plus, Sylveon's strong special attack lets it strike with an impressive range of indirect moves.
Its Cute Charm ability also warrants usage, granting a 30% chance to inflict the dreaded infatuation condition on foes of the opposite gender who attack directly. Since infatuation doesn't classify as one of the main status conditions and gives a 50% chance of each attack failing, it can quickly ruin an opponent's day, especially when used in tangent with other status effects. Toss in some nice barriers and weather control, (Light Screen and Misty Terrain) and you've got a formidable unit, especially considering that the Fairy type has fewer monsters to pick from than other elements.
Evolves When: A Water Stone is used
Ability: Water Absorb
Vaporeon's disappointing base ability (like Flareon, few are dumb enough to hit Vaporeon with water and replenish its health) is compensated for with a unique stat spread, potent moves, and great type. Water is only weak to two elements but resists four; combined with a surprisingly high HP score (130!), some nice defensive techniques (Acid Armor, Aqua Ring, etc.), and a solid special defense, Vaporeon makes for a decent tank who can actually hit back thanks to strong special attack.
Throw in a few Ice moves while leveling to round out your elemental coverage, and you've got one heck of an Eeveelution. Plus, if the dreadful ability turns you off, remember that (like all Pokemon) Vaporeon bears a hidden ability you can unlock instead, and luckily Hydration easily trumps Water Absorb, curing status conditions during intense rain.
Future of Eeveelutions
Although Generation 8 didn't introduce any new Eevee evolutionary tracks, fans remain hopeful that we'll encounter the unused elements in the future (you can even find many fanmade designs online). With their stat total of 525, Eeveelutions aren't quite big enough to commonly hit competitive tournaments, but are often seen in restricted play.
Beyond that, they're simply fun and unique Pokémon bearing unrivaled evolutionary options, and I look forward to revisiting the debate all over when new forms inevitably release. But for now, as we eagerly await more pathways for Pokémon's cutest fox-dog blend, vote for your favorite rendition and I'll see you at our next Poéemon countdown!
Questions & Answers
Question: How many Eeveelutions can there be?
Answer: As of this writing, there are currently 18 mainstream types, so presumably 18 Eeveelutions. However, we'll probably see new types as time passes, and there's no rule that says we can't have multiple Eeveelutions who share a type (or perhaps start blending them), so many more could potentially exist.
Question: Will there be a Bug-type Eeveelution i Pokémon?
Answer: Maybe one day! Bug isn't generally the most popular element, so I doubt it's the next one on the list, but eventually Nintendo will run out of alternatives and likely craft one.
For now, fan-made designs like Pesteon and Lepideon will have to satisfy fans.
Question: Is there a Flying-type Eeveelution?
Answer: Not yet, but that'd certainly be an interesting one.
Question: Which is your favorite Eeveelution?
Answer: Maybe Umbreon, but I'm eager to see new types (my favorite is Steel) and two-type Eeveelutions.
© 2018 Jeremy Gill
Miette on July 16, 2020:
Espeon is my favourite one, I liked it since Shauna explained it to Serena.
Furthermore a psychic type is all for me.
pokemon fan1234 on June 05, 2020:
i like Espeon the best it is my fav color but i have never used one though instead i have a jolteon but i sill love him
Ozzie Bennett on May 27, 2020:
I think Vaporeon is the best because of his stats, ability, and which is sick, he/she can be INVISIBLE IN WATER.
kittens123 on May 20, 2020:
i have loved sylveon and serena ever since her eevee evolved!!
Marina opal on April 17, 2020:
I am an ice type and fairy type trainer. I, no offence, never really liked Glaceon, but have learned to. I love all eeveelutions now
Kay on March 30, 2020:
of doom on March 29, 2020:
Sylveon can learn grass, dark, psychic and fairy moves. win win
Biggest eevee fan on earth on March 22, 2020:
I’ll give you one of my eeveelutions:
With a unknown past, people believe that it used to be a Leafeon which survived multiple natural disasters and then evolved into Natureon.
Moveset: Roar of Nature, Touch of Nature, Mega Vine Whip and Nature’s Payback.
Noora on March 16, 2020:
I love FLAREON!!
Kitty on December 06, 2019:
I love jolteon
PPGfan31 on September 12, 2019:
Sylveon is my favorite Eevee evolution.
Dovewing on June 09, 2019:
Sylveon is a fairy type and is pink Ik I don’t rlly like pink at all but she’s really strong! She only has a few weakness like eevee! Even some boys like Sylveon! They are easy to train and are usually Effective on other Pokémon by a lot usually super affective or effective. I have a Sylveon named silver I raised it for a week only and it’s already at lvl 50. I recommend Sylveon for the best eevee evolved form.
Heather on June 09, 2019:
Vaporeon is the strongest and cutest! It will always be my fave Pokémon ever!
Sylvie on April 20, 2019:
Sylveon is the cutest and kind of call as it has small fangs and feelers which look like ribbons. Fairy types are my favourite and I love pink.
Pokètoons on February 22, 2019:
I love umbreon! He is so cute! I love him! Although I wouldn’t mind any other one of them! They are all cute!
Maddison on January 22, 2019:
My faverite evolution fro eevee is flareon .
Kay on August 29, 2018:
I want a Spectreon!!!
Chung on August 08, 2018:
Great list! I agree with this list a lot!
TepigTheBeast from Connecticut on August 03, 2018:
Thanks for the support! :D
Jeremy Gill (author) from Louisiana on August 03, 2018:
You're welcome, good luck with your Pokemon articles!
Thank you! Espeon's always been pretty cool, and it was a fun deviation for Colosseum to give us two evolved Pokemon right off the bat.
TepigTheBeast from Connecticut on August 02, 2018:
My 2 favorite Eevee evolutions are Glaceon and Vaporeon. Thanks for the awesome facts! Also, I made a new Pokemon article about the top 3 Grass type starters including some of the information you had when you made your best Grass Starter theory. The article is in the link:https://levelskip.com/rpgs/Pokemon-I-Choose-Who-Gr...
Poppy from Enoshima, Japan on June 07, 2018:
My favourite has been Espeon ever since Pokémon Colosseum. Thank you for the nostalgia, Jeremy! Great article, as always.